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Before the poinsettias start showing up and after the jack-o’-lanterns have been put away, mums are still in full force until Thanksgiving. Few things are as welcoming as a pot of simple mums. No matter whether you choose yellow, red, rust or purple, mums create an inviting welcome.

Inside out

No matter whether you want to dress up your outdoor living spaces or indoor ones, mums are right at home.

Give your porch a lift by creating a cozy seating area with a pot of mums next to your porch rockers. Don't overlook the backyard, either.

Add pots of mums in bushel baskets next to your outdoor fireplace or fire pit next to some oversized gourds or pumpkins. Tuck in smaller contrasting mums next to chairs. Adding pots in odd numbers in varied sizes creates more visual appeal.

Although you might be tempted to add mums in the standard places, tucking in a pot of mums in your indoor and outdoor planters creates unexpected interest and depth and connects your planters with the season. Simple four- and six-inch mums tucked into greenery creates a simple, yet elegant fall touch. Add mums next to your mailbox planter to create a cheery look next to the driveway.

Inside, bring a touch of a fall to a bowl of apples by pairing deep red mums with Granny Smith apples, or a bright bunch of yellow mums in your bowl of red apples.

Hedged

To pull out all the stops on your fall decorating, try adding mums as a solid hedge. Mums are often left in pots, but when they're grouped together in a long line, they create a blaze of color and a vibrant spot in your landscape and indoor decorating.

Outdoors, clump pots together or plant in your landscape in a long line. Or, outline a porch by adding pots inside a trough planter. Indoors, try adding a small clay or ceramic window box in your kitchen window or the center of a kitchen island and fill in with a row of mums in small pots. Fill in empty spaces with sheet or Spanish moss.

Step it up

To create an inviting entry, try adding pots of mums on each step up to the front door. For a dressier look, take mums out of plastic pots and add to tall urns to flank your front entry. Or try adding mums to hanging pots on your porch or on either side of the front door.

To make your mums look especially inviting, be sure to put them in a suitable container that adds to their charm, such as clay pots, ceramic planters, urns or wicker baskets. Even galvanized buckets turn from cold to charming by the addition of some colorful mums. Simply changing out the container can give a $10 mum a $50 look.

Create a warm doorway with a hanging basket on the front door filled with mums. For more interest, add in some trailing ivy and you'll have a natural embellishment for your door that looks like you picked it up at a pricy florist.

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